Monday, April 22, 2013

Necrons are like nacho cheese, they go great on everything.

...and they'll probably kill the game in the end, just like the nacho cheese will clog up your arteries and give you a hear attack at 35.

But while the cheesiness last, how about this:

Tau-crons(err Necro-Tau) 1850
Cadre Fireblade
Riptide w/ Heavy Burst Cannon, Twin Linked Smart Missiles, Early Warning Override
Riptide w/ Ion Accelerator, Twin Linked Fusion Blaster, Early Warning Override
12x Firewarriors
10x Kroot
10x Kroot
2x Broadsides w/Rail Rifles and Velocity Trackers
Skyray w/ Smart Missiles
Overloard w/ Warscythe, Supplemental Weave, Mind Shackle Scarabs, Command Barge
2x Storm Crypteks
C'tan Shard w/ Entropic Touch, Psy Shards
5x Warriors w/ Nightyscythe
5x Warriors w/ Nightyscythe
Annihilation Barge

Monday, April 15, 2013

Some further Tau Analysis

I've been continuing to play around with lists and got a game in against Spaguatyrine.  He ended up winning still, but I did much better than old Tau two weeks ago.  I played a Tau only 1850 list:

Commander w/ Plasma Rifle, Missile Pod, Target Lock, Vectored Retro Thrusters, Irridium Armor, Puretide Neurochip.
Cadre Fireblade
3x Crisis Suits w/ Plasma Rifle, Missile Pod
Riptide w/ Ion Accelerator, Positional Relay, Early Warning Override
Riptide w/ Ion Accelerator, Positional Relay, Early Warning Override
12x Firewarriors
12x Firewarriors
10x Kroot
10x Kroot
10x Pathfinders w/ 3x Rail Rifles and EMP grenades
6x Pathfinders
3x Broadsides w/ 2x Railsides and 1x Missileside all with Velocity Tracker
Skyray w/ Smart Missiles
Hammerhead w/ Smart Missiles, Submunitions

The trick to this army was to get a Riptide across the board to bring in one Pathfinder and two Kroot squads from the back table edge.  It sort of worked.  I messed it up by sending the Pathfinders at a different target and left the Kroot unsupported.  Had I used them in a more concentrated fashion it might have worked better.

I'm starting to think the Commander is a little to pricey for what he does.  He's got some great upgrades and is pretty tough.  You can kit him out to do just about anything.   Though with the decreased cost of everything else in the codex, you can take a unit just about anything else instead for the same points cost.

People who are complaining about Broadsides being nerfed have obviously been forgetting to fire the Smart Missiles.  OMG, Smart Missiles   Not just an afterthought anymore.  30" range, twin linked, no LOS, and ignores cover.  I'm think of running Devilfish just so I can have some more.  The Missileside is especially impressive.  Broadsides really shine when using supporting fire overwatch.  Though I may have been playing suits and supporting fire wrong.  I didn't notice that the wording on the multi-tracker was changed to "may fire an additional weapon in the shooting phase"  I'd like to think RAI is that the suit can fire both weapons in overwatch, because overwatch follows all normal shooting rules.  But RAW seems to go the other way.  Still just firing a bunch of ST5 twin-linked shots during overwach is nothing to sneeze at.  Counter fire defensive systems may be a reasonable upgrade for Broadsides if not taking the Velocity Tracker.

Pathfinders are way too squishy now with their lower armor save.  It means they need to go to ground just about anytime they are shot at.  Which means snap-firing their marker-lights.  And leadership 7 without a Shas'ui sees them running off the table half the time.  Drone Squadrons may be the way to go for markerlight support.  With JSJ you can hide them out of line of sight and make them a little more survivable.  They are only BS2, but with an attached drone controller commander(expensive) or by chaining marker light hits from a Fireblade, that can be mitigated.

Still loving Riptides.  Can't bring myself to build a list without two in it.  5 points for interceptor on that Ion Accelerator is criminal.

I'm thinking of changing the load-out on my one crisis suit squad.  I need a little more tank busting ability for when facing Necrons and their armor 13 skimmers.  Plasma/Fusion over Plasma/Missile seems better.  Twin-linked Fusion may also be good.

Monday, April 8, 2013

Tau - First Impression and Some Actual Play Experience

There's a bunch of new Tau codex haters on a certain blue website and a certain black and orange forum.  I honestly don't get it.  The new codex is not perfect, but it is a huge improvement.  Maybe my expectations where lower, but the codex went up measurably in play-ability.

There are still some weaknesses.  The loss of ST10 on broadsides hurt a bit.  It leaves the codex a little light on weapons that can reliably hurt armor 13 and 14 at longer ranges.  The troops slot is also still pretty weak.  A bit improved, but it's still pretty hard to take or hold objectives with Firewarriors and Kroot.  And if you spend enough points on troops to make a difference, you really degrade the efficiency of the rest of the army.   They needed a third troop option, or at least some minor force org shifting.  Crisis Suits as Troops would be a bit much, but a single Stealth Suit or Pathfinder squad as troops would have been nice.

There are a bunch of junk wargear options, but have you ever seen a Xenos codex that wasn't full of junk wargear that no one ever takes?  At least the majority is good.  And Puretide Neurochips and Early Warning Overrides make up for all the fail gear.

List building has been tough.  Mostly because it's hard to fit in all the cool stuff I want.  Very easy to overspend on a unit due to how customizable some of the entries are.  Pathfinders especially.  They get access to a lot of cool new gear, but you have to remember these guys only have 5+ saves now.  Their core competency is marker lights, anything that takes away from that is wasted points.  I end up just going with basic guys in almost every list I've built.  If only I could take those Ion Rifles with my Fire Warriors...

I played two games on Saturday with the new codex.  Once against Demons, the other against Space Marines.  Both opponents called it by the end of the second round of Tau shooting.  The volume and quality of shooting in the list is much better than before.  You can now take all the markerlights that always had to be cut for more suits in the old codex.

Supporting fire is freaking amazing.  You just don't assault a Tau gun line with a single unit anymore.  Between the Counter-fire Defensive System upgrades and marker lights affecting overwatch, it takes a very beefy unit to make it into melee unscathed.

Riptides with a Ion Accelerator and interceptor are also brutal.  Don't come in from reserve within line-of-sight of these guys unless you want a ST8 AP2 large blast to the face.  Not sold on 20 pt skyfire for these guys though.  In standard fire mode 3 BS3 ST7 AP2 shots in't terribly great at taking down flyers.

The bomber is kinda cool.  I like its little interceptor drones, but the rest of its firepower is weak for a 160 point flyer.    

I think the go to AA in my lists is going to be a pair of railsides with a seeker missile each and a Skyray.  If my Commander isn't doing anything better, he'll attach to the broadsides to give them tank hunter and a T5 bullet catcher.  That should be good for at least a flyer a turn.  Maybe two with a little luck.  I've been trying to work in a third broadside to the unit, but I can't seem to find the points.

The current list I've settled on:

Tau 1850 with Space Marine Allies
Commander w/ Misslile Pod, Plasma Rifle, Target Lock, Drone Controller, Iridium Armor, Puretide
Neurochip, 2x Marker Drones
Librarian w/ Null Zone, Gate of Infinity
Crisis Suit Team, 3x Suits w/ Missile Pod, Plasma Rifle
Riptide Suit w/ Ion Accelerator, Counterfire Defensive System, Early Warning Override
Riptide Suit w/ Ion Accelerator, Counterfire Defensive System, Early Warning Override
Fire Warrior squad w/ 12x Fire Warriors
Kroot Squad w/ 10 Warriors
Tactical Squad w/10 Marines, Combi-Melta, Melta, Multi-Melta, Rhino
Tactical Squad w/10 Marines, Combi-Melta, Melta, Multi-Melta, Rhino
Pathfinder Team w/8 Pathfinders
Broadside Team w/2 Broadsides, Velocity Trackers, Seeker Missiles
Skyray w/Smart Missile System, Disruption Pods

Thursday, April 4, 2013

OK, now for something positive (I really think I'm going to like the new Tau)

While GW might be frelling up their supply chain, I think the new Tau codex is pretty cool.  I've seen links for a lot of the stuff and it's all pretty sweet.  Though haters gonna hate I suppose.  I've seen much discussion about Tau are so much worse now that Broadsides are only ST8 AP1.  You know, for all that AV14 we see on the tables these days.  I guess they are also a little pissed that the army is pretty much BS3 across the board with no way to improve it. Well, except for marker-lights which are cheaper and more accessible.

Nothing seems Helldrake stupid, which is a good thing.  We don't need any more of that in the game.  Though maybe they'll FAQ the Riptide so that it can combine with a crisis suit team to form Voltron.  With GW you never know.

I like how you can work Skyfire into every force org slot except troops.  Yeah it's 20 points, but I can take skyfiring Fusion Guns!  Which now have an 18 inch range.  You can upgrade suits to have interceptor for 5 points.  Including the Riptide.  Yes, deep strike within line of sight to my model with a ST8 AP2 large blast.

I like how everything got cheaper.  Suits are 22 points base know and have Multi-Trackers and Blacksun filters included for free.  That's a total 10 point reduction.  Most of their weapon options came down in price too.  The special issue equipment looks to be worth taking.  You don't have to take a Devilfish to run Pathfinders anymore.     

I like how the army has blast weapons now thanks to overcharged ion weapons.

I like how they added missile drones, so that I can give my Fire Warriors some extra firepower.

I like how marker-lights can improve snap-fire and overwatch, and all the other tricks the army can do to make assaulting them a risky option.   And you'll hardly ever get cover saves against Tau.

I'm cool with giving up my ST10 braodsides for all that.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

When GW gives with one hand, they make sure and shank with the other.

Looks like GW didn't make enough Tau for everyone, and LGSs are getting the shaft because of it. 

Is it malice or incompetence?  With GW you just can't tell anymore.  They tend to use equal measures of both.  Though it is possible GW just didn't correctly gauge the appeal of giant freaking robots.

It also works with my current inner narrative about GW's release schedule.  As in it's more panic than planning. 

I want my Tau codex!

I've seen the leaked pages from the Spanish version of the codex.  So excited.  I'm thinking Tau is the meta beat stick to rein in flyers.  Sky-firing 18" fusion guns? Yes, please.  That's if battlesuits can take the same sky-fire upgrade as broadsides; which is looking like a good possibility.  Even then there's a warlord trait to give him and his unit sky-fire.  Oh, and another warlord trait shuts down look-out-sir rolls[insert evil laugh].    

Ethereals look like they are going to be useful finally.  +1 shots to pulse weapons that stacks with the +1 from Cadre Fireblades.   That's a whole lot of St5 shooting.

And the Riptide.  Expensive, but awesome.  T6 with 5 wounds. I'll probably run it with the ion cannon and twin linked plasma rifles.  Not sure if I'll add the shielded missile drones.  25 points each.  I'll have to test it out.

I want to try something like this out in my first list: Cadre Fireblade, Battlesuit Commander, 1 crisis suit squad, 2 Riptides, 2 Firewarrior squads, 2 Kroot squads, 2 rail-sides squads with two suits each, Avatar, Wraithlord, and min Dire Avenger squad.  Plus whatever else I can squeeze in.  Probably a flyer or Pathfinders.